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Parenting Stepchildren/step parenting troubled child


How do I handle my step daughter who is secretive a habitual liar and is cutting herself when her father doesn't handle anything and I wind up being the (bad guy).  We fight(my husband and I) because of this.

I can understand what you are feeling as I have a step daughter that cut herself.  Please consult with a professional as I am not qualified to provide you with much help. Talk to the school counsellor, or go to a family health centre to find someone to help her.  

When a teen, usually females, cut themselves they are often punishing themselves for not being good enough.   Being secretive and lying are also part of this syndrome.  This girl is crying out for help or has some deep emotional issues that she is struggling with, and although cutting is not attempts at suicide is is a very serious issue.

My wife and I also fought over discipline issues.  When a biological parent is confronted with issues like these they often defend their children in spite of knowing that they should do something about it.  

So best advice I can give you is to:

first and most important - consult a professional to get her some help to deal with the struggle she is having inside.

second - back off on being the disciplinarian for her that is her dad's role...take the pressure off of her while you help her understand that she can get help.


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Rick Olson


As a stepparent of 4 children and a family coach, I can answer questions about the issues that arise in step-parenting including discipline,blended families, boundaries and guidelines.


I have 18 years as a stepfather, and over three years as a family coach focusing on unifying, strengthening and empowering families.

My wife and I have written 2 books on Family FUSE Your Family - Family: Unify Strengthen Empower! and Raising Families

BA(Recreation Administration) Grad Studies in Urban and Regional Planning and Design Certified as a LifeSuccess Consultant/Coach

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